Current DevelopmentsDiscussionKick-off

The Referendum on Catalan Self-Determination (Part I)

Endemic Rhetoric, Interpretive Hypocrisy and Legal Imagination

Dawn of the Living Dead? Self-Determination in (Southern) Europe, 1991 – 2017 Scheduled to take place on 1 October 2017, the referendum on the independence of Catalonia looks to be a turning point in the history of the Iberian peninsula; if not a point of no return, then at least the moment after which the relationship between Catalonia and Spain will never again be the same. Though it is hard …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Access to Justice for Socio-Economic Rights: Lessons from the Indian Experience

This is a cross-post shared with  the blog of the International Association of Constitutional Law as part of a collaboration between Voelkerrechtsblog and the IACL Blog. Professor David Bilchitz in a recent blog considered obstacles concerning access to justice for litigating socio-economic rights in South Africa and potential solutions to overcome these obstacles. He argued that South Africa should (i) empower individuals to enable them to make claims and (ii) expand its current …

READ MORE →

Discussion

Is a bird in the hand always worth two in the bush?

An assessment of the EU’s New Approch Towards the Two-State Solution

This post inaugurates a new cooperation of Völkerrechtsblog with the “Leiden Journal of International Law“. Firmly established as one of the leading journals in the field, the Leiden Journal of International Law (LJIL) provides a venue for sharp and critical voices that speak on the theory and practice of international law. It aspires to introduce or amplify refreshing and innovative approaches to perennial as well as topical issues in the field. The Journal’s focus …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Messing with the Mess We Are In

Notes from the Transregional Academy on ‘Redistribution and the Law in an Antagonistic World’ from 21-30 August 2017 in Berlin

German legal scholarship has a reputation for being quite orthodox. Amid doctrinal sophistication and positivist assumptions, however, lie hidden treasure islands of heterodoxy. One such island was the Transregional Academy on ‘Redistribution and the Law in an Antagonistic World’, organized by the Forum Transregionale Studien and a steering committee of legal academics based in the US, UK and Germany. The Academy explored different ways in which law shapes and regulates …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Status: “It’s complicated”

On African leaders’ troubled relationship with international courts

Courts are to many African leaders what models are to soccer stars: they are arm candy, but they are not expected to develop a life of their own, or make anybody look bad in public. Thus, if international courts dare to touch upon issues that actually matter to African elites, they will either be killed off or neutered, or, if this is not possible, states will withdraw from their jurisdiction. …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Constitutional authoritarianism, not authoritarian constitutionalism!

A Constitutionalist View

In these times of re-emerging illiberalism, populism and authoritarianism, there is an increasing need for us to attempt to find new academic concepts to describe the phenomena that are emerging. These efforts can also help to redefine existing forms of constitutional developments. One increasingly common term used is authoritarian constitutionalism, which seems to fit into the debates of the last decades like global constitutionalism or international constitutionalism, and appears to …

READ MORE →

InterviewPractitioner's Corner

David gegen Goliath

Ein Interview mit Survival International zu den Rechten indigener Völker

Wenn man über indigene Völker in den Medien liest, dann liest man in der Regel leider selten Gutes: Land Grabbing, Vertreibung oder, wie in Australien, der Kampf der Aborigines um die Anerkennung als erste Bewohner des Landes in Form eines Vertrages. Survival International ist eine internationale Nichtregierungsorganisation, die sich für die Rechte indigener Völker einsetzt. Wir sprachen mit Linda Poppe von Survival International über aktuelle Herausforderungen, Möglichkeiten und Grenzen des Rechts …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The C-Star’s Odyssey and the International Law of the Sea

In Homer’s epic poem, “The Odyssey”, the Greek hero Odysseus, having left his home Ithaca to help bring Helena back from Troy, faced manifold hardships on his return across the Mediterranean Sea. In July 2017, European citizens set sail in a self-prescribed mission not to bring someone home, but to prevent others from calling Europe home. The loosely affiliated Generation Identity, consisting mostly of activists from Austria, France, Germany and …

READ MORE →

Forum

On book reviews: Why, when and how to write them

Book reviews are perhaps a difficult format for academic writing. After all, what we all like to do best is talk about ourselves and our own ideas and why we are right. Writing a book review, however, puts someone else’s work in prime position; readers learn first about the reviewed work and only secondly something about the writer of the review herself. Perhaps this is why so few scholars, in …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Interrogating “Constitutionalism of the South” and New Pathways for Research: The Case for a Central America in the Global Debate

Latin American constitutional scholarship is on the rise in the Anglophone world. New collaborative works (such as Dixon and Ginsburg’s new comparative constitutional law edition (2017), the Borges et al ‘Law and Policy’ edition (2017), and Couso et al ‘Cultures of Legality’ (2010), as well as individual monographs (like Gargarella (2013) and Mirow (2015)), provide a quality introduction to the region in English. Latin Americanism in Latin American Comparative Studies …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Zwischen Skylla und Charybdis

Die Kollision von völkerrechtlichen Intra-EU-BITs mit dem Unionsrecht

Die Straßen rund um das Plateau Kirchberg im Osten Luxemburgs, quasi der Herzkammer der europäischen Rechtswissenschaft, sind schon seit mehreren Jahren eine Dauerbaustelle. Am Montag, den 19. Juni 2017, war vielen im Luxemburger Europaquartier jedoch klar, dass die vielleicht größten Baustellen hinter den Türen des Boulevard Konrad Adenauer liegen. Die Vereinbarkeit des Unionsrechts mit den Schiedsgerichtsverfahren ist nicht erst seit den Diskussionen um die Freihandelsabkommen CETA und TTIP ein Dauerbrenner …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Knowledge Production in Comparative Constitutional Law

Alterity – Contingency – Hybridity

The idea and the reality of the Global South represent different types of epistemological challenges to the disciplinary identity of comparative (constitutional) law. As a term, it is no more than two decades old, though its pedigree reaches back to the 1950s and the idea of a ‘third world’ which brought together Cold War developmental taxonomy with the earlier concept of a formerly excluded ‘third estate’ (tiers etat) staking a …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Towards a Constitutionalism of the Wretched

Global Constitutionalism, International Law and the Global South

The field of Global Constitutionalism (also sometimes called “International Constitutionalism”) is a very odd field, one which, with very limited exceptions (Frankenberg, Schwöbel, and Volk), has been neglected by most critical international and constitutional law scholars. One reason it is an oddity is because of its disciplinary hybridity. That is to say, it is neither fish nor fowl – it is neither fully a discipline of comparative constitutionalism nor is …

READ MORE →

DiscussionResponse

On ‘cyber trafficking’ and the protection of its victims

‘Cyber trafficking’ has become a buzzword in scientific and policy discussions related to human trafficking. However, as has been noted elsewhere, the term is far from being used in a uniform way. In her recent post, Sabine Witting discusses the case of trafficking that is exclusively committed online. In my view, ‘cyber trafficking’ is a much more wide-spread phenomenon than what her article seems to imply, occurring within many cases …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Expanding Access to Justice for Socio-Economic Rights Complaints in South Africa

Which Direction Should We Head in?

The South African constitution has been lauded for its inclusion of justiciable socio-economic rights. Yet, making claims flowing from these rights remains inaccessible to many people across the country. This blog post (based on a paper being presented at a conference in Berlin on Constitutionalism in the Global South) seeks to consider the obstacles relating to access to justice for socio-economic rights claims in South Africa and potential solutions. I …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Pushing for Transformation

Comment on the VRÜ anniversary conference panel on “Transformative Constitutionalism”

Transformative constitutionalism is a somewhat fuzzy notion. Reflecting about its exact meaning, one wonders what it actually is that distinguishes transformative constitutions of other types of constitutions. On the surface, the qualification as transformative signifies that a constitution contains norms that describe a particular aim or status to be reached. In the German context, one might for example think of Article 3 (2) of the Grundgesetz requiring the state to …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Conceptualizing authoritarian constitutionalism

A Latin American view

Authoritarian constitutionalism is a new category used by constitutional law scholars to refer to a distinct type of regime wherein there are faulty practices and a constitution with an authoritarian content. With these characteristics in mind it seems contradictory to talk about “constitutionalism”. In this post I introduce a different understanding of authoritarian constitutionalism. For Mark Tushnet, authoritarian constitutionalism is an intermediate normative model between liberal constitutionalism and authoritarianism that …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

The Global South in Comparative Constitutional Law

Opening remarks on the 50th VRÜ anniversary conference

While scholarship in comparative constitutional law is booming, this anniversary conference is an unusual event in at least two ways: It is asking particularly about the role of the Global South in comparative constitutional law, and it does so with a group of speakers that is mixed, if not dominated by voices from the Global South. And indeed: This conference is meant to be not just a reflection of current …

READ MORE →

Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

The 12mm-Winchester-Gun and the Global South in Comparative Constitutional Law

Symposium accompanying the 50-year anniversary conference of our partner journal VRÜ

This week, our partner journal Verfassung und Recht in Übersee (VRÜ) / Law and Politics in Asia, Africa and Latin America celebrates its 50th birthday with an international conference on “The Global South in Comparative Constitutional Law” in Berlin. We will accompany this conference with an online symposium also featured on the blog of the International Association of Constitutional Law. The symposium is not only intended to make the conference …

READ MORE →

Interview

“You learn a lot from your teachers but mostly from your students”

An interview with Joseph H. H. Weiler

From Joseph Weiler you can learn a lot – not only about what he teaches, but also about how to teach. That was the widely shared impression of participants in the 2017 Masterclass at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg. At the end of four amazing days of discussion and learning, Joseph Weiler kindly agreed to give an interview, and to talk about jokes, teaching, and the human condition.

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The unsolved case of Giulio Regeni

An attempted legal analysis

More than one year after the dead body of the Italian Ph.D. student Giulio Regeni was found in Cairo, his ghastly demise remains unresolved. The circumstances of his death cast a shadow of suspicion over potential involvement of either Egyptian police forces or secret services in the killing. Egyptian authorities initially denied any allegations, consistently maintaining unconvincing accounts. Only recently, have Egyptian authorities displayed dubious signs of cooperation with their Italian counterparts …

READ MORE →

DiscussionKick-off

‘Cyber’ Trafficking? An Interpretation of the Palermo Protocol in the Digital Era

The digital era has changed the traditional realm and modus operandi of organised crime, such as human trafficking. With the increasing access to and usage of the internet, major criminal activity has expanded to the online sphere. Law enforcement around the world is however largely not prepared for combatting cybercrime. Many states have not yet reached the capacity of drafting cyber specific legislation. In Africa for example, only 11 states …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsForum

Preemptive Self-Defense? Not yet!

Nordkorea hat in diesem Jahr neun Raketentests durchgeführt, zuletzt drei innerhalb von nur drei Wochen, begleitet von den üblichen Drohungen Richtung Südkorea und den USA. Die letzte Rakete ist am 29. Mai nach rund 450 km in das japanische Meer gestürzt. Auch Japan fühlt sich bedroht und kündigte „konkrete Schritte“ an. Außerdem befinden sich mittlerweile drei Flugzeugträgergruppen der US Navy im Westpazifik. Amerikanische B1 Bomber unternehmen Übungsflüge über Südkorea, und …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The Michigan Guidelines on Refugee Freedom of Movement, or: how explosive existing law can be

The Michigan Guidelines are a document in which legal scholars summarize the existing international laws of refugee protection on one particular aspect. They are “just” an expert opinion – yet by no means insignificant in that capacity. They are used by courts interpreting the law and thus stand themselves at the threshold of the legal. At any rate the guidelines can frame debates about the legality of state actions in …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Die Michigan Guidelines on Refugee Freedom of Movement, oder: so brisant ist das geltende Recht

Die Michigan Guidelines sind ein Dokument, in welchem WissenschaftlerInnen das bestehende Flüchtlingsrechts zu einem bestimmten Aspekt zusammenfassen. Sie sind „nur“ eine Expertenmeinung – und dabei doch nicht wenig: Sie werden von Gerichten zur Auslegung des Rechts herangezogen und stehen so selbst an der Schwelle zum Rechtlichen. In jedem Fall können sie die Debatten über Rechtmäßigkeit von staatlichem Handeln im Bereich Flüchtlingsschutz und Migrationskontrolle rahmen. Sie tragen die wesentlichen Rechtsvorschriften zusammen …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsForum

Kulturgüter – Neue Narrative für den Umgang mit dem postkolonialen Erbe

Der Kulturgüterschutz ist wie kaum ein anderes Feld mit Fragen der Identität sowie Emotionen verknüpft. In ihrem konzisen Überblick zu den Herausforderungen des völkerrechtlichen Kulturgüterschutzes hat Adrianna A. Michel diesen Punkt subkutan, aber auch explizit, thematisiert. „Restitution“ ist in aller Munde, wenn historische Gerechtigkeit beschworen wird, die gegenüber den ehemaligen Kolonialterritorien und quasi-kolonialisierten Gebieten zu üben ist. Mit der Argumentationsfigur vom gemeinsamen kulturellen Erbe der Menschheit werden solche Forderungen oftmals …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsDiscussionKick-off

The International Arbitration Bill and the future of arbitrations in South Africa

“The vast bulk of Africa-related international arbitration cases are resolved in Europe.” Most treaties concluded by the Republic of South Africa (‘RSA’) do not require the exhaustion of domestic remedies before approaching an international tribunal. The case of Piero Foresti, Laura de Carli and others v. Republic of South Africa (ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/07/1) (‘Piero Foresti’) has been cited as the case that galvanised the government of South Africa to take …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Vive la diversité!

A Roadmap to Gender Parity on African Regional Courts?

As of May 2017, the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACtHPR) appears to be the most gender balanced bench in the world, with women occupying 45% (5 out of 11) of the seats on the court. This development is a far outcry from the meager 18% (2 out of 11) seats women have occupied on the court when it came into force in 2006. Notwithstanding this observation, the …

READ MORE →

DiscussionResponse

The role of the ICC and of non-State actors concerning the protection of cultural heritage

International cultural heritage law is a vast and complex field of research which involves many actors, as the previous contribution by Adrianna Michel shows. In response, we would like to give a couple of thoughts on two of the issues raised by the author: the role of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and the role of non-States actors. Regarding the ICC, the condemnation of Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi for …

READ MORE →

DiscussionKick-off

Kulturgüterschutz – eine Verpflichtung gegenüber der uns nachfolgenden Generation

Die heutigen Formen der Bedrohung von Kulturgütern sind vielschichtig. Neben der Zerstörung in bewaffneten Konflikten oder aus religiösem Wahn spielen auch der Raub und die Verschleppung in und nach kriegerischen Auseinandersetzungen eine wesentliche Rolle. In den letzten Jahren hat sich in tragischer Weise gezeigt, dass islamistische Fundamentalisten immer häufiger mit der Zerstörung von bedeutenden Kulturgütern die Bühne der Weltöffentlichkeit suchen. Die Zerstörungswut richtet sich gezielt gegen die zivilisierte Wertegemeinschaft. Unersetzliche …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Judgment and diversity

Thinking with Hannah Arendt about the composition of international court benches

If the number of female judges in an international tribunal is one out of twenty-one, as in the case of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), we can assume that there is a problem. Not because a woman’s judgment would necessarily and predictably be different, as Selen Kazan has discussed. But, as Nienke Grossman also explains here, because women are just as qualified to serve as …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Konstitutionelles Sultanat versus US-amerikanisches Präsidialsystem

Regimewechsel Die Türkei hat am 16. April 2017 ein Verfassungsreferendum durchgeführt. Eine knappe (noch umstrittene) Mehrheit von 51,4 % der Wähler hat sich für die Einführung eines Präsidialsystems ausgesprochen. Damit steht der nach dem Ersten Weltkrieg entstandene türkische Staat vor einem epochalen Regimewechsel: Die Verfassungsänderung (vgl. für englische Übersetzung hier) ersetzt das parlamentarische System durch ein „Präsidialsystem alla turca“. Ab 2019 entfällt das Amt des Regierungschefs (Ministerpräsidenten); der Präsident wird zukünftig …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsEvent

Grenzenloses Recht. Dem Völkerrechtshistoriker Jörg Fisch zum 70. Geburtstag

Wie universal kann ein eurozentrisch geprägtes Völkerrecht sein? Und wie lässt sich vermeiden, dass faktische Ungleichheit eine internationale Rechtsordnung sprengt, die seit der Dekolonisierung als Recht zwischen Gleichen ausgestaltet ist? Mit diesen Fragen hat sich der Zürcher Historiker Jörg Fisch schon in seiner 1984 veröffentlichten Bielefelder Habilitationsschrift „Die europäische Expansion und das Völkerrecht“ befasst – einer bahnbrechenden Studie über „die Auseinandersetzungen um den Status der überseeischen Gebiete vom 15. Jahrhundert …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Why a woman’s presence on the bench is a human rights issue

In order to avoid the danger of an essentialist approach when talking about women’s representation in international courts, the issue should be framed as of of human rights and not merely as one of gender. Although both approaches, the human rights and a more gender-focused feminist one, may have the same goal this is a tricky and crucial distinction to be made. When discussing arguments for women’s presence on the …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Feminist Judgments in International Law

The Idea of the Feminist Judgments Projects A feminist critique of international courts can confront the lack of representation and inclusion of women as well as women’s lack of access to courts and the justice system. However, any critique of International Courts would be limited without a critical analysis of their output, the all important judgment! Instead of performing the usual academic critique of where the judgment was lacking in …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Feminism and the International Criminal Court – still an issue?

While the International Criminal Court (ICC) has always been subject to criticism and is maybe currently facing its biggest crisis with member states withdrawing, the things that are actually going quite well must not be forgotten. It is time to reexamine the ICC from a different perspective: the feminist one. After the adoption of the Rome Statute (RS) in 1998, many envisioned the Court as almost “feminist” due to its …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

It’s not about “women’s issues”.

An interview with Nienke Grossman about parity on international court benches

There is no way to get around Nienke Grossman’s work when reflecting about diversity on the benches of international courts. Her scholarship offers statistics about the numbers of women judges, their development over the last years and the respective distribution along nationalities; it examines causes for the exclusion of women, and discusses reasons for claiming a more equal composition of benches. While directly concerned with the representation of women in …

READ MORE →

Feminist Critiques of International CourtsSymposium

Symposium: Feminist Critiques of International Courts

In the upcoming days, we are very glad to host a symposium on feminist critiques of international courts. Where to begin when introducing this topic? There is much to say about the particular role of (international) courts for international law, and equally much about the role of feminist perspectives for international law. Courts are not just institutions, in which a decision is rendered about the interpretation of law in a …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsDiscussionKick-off

Iran’s Ballistic Missile Tests

Legal and Political Challenges

Little over a week after the inauguration of Donald Trump, the new President of the United State (US), the US officials increased international tensions over Iran’s ballistic missile test on January 29, 2017. Shortly after, the UN Security Council scheduled urgent consultations on 31st of January over Iran’s failed ballistic missile test at the request of the US. As to the US claims on the violation of the Nuclear Deal, reached …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsDiscussionResponse

Die Büchse der Pandora

Auch bei einem Giftgaseinsatz erlaubt das Völkerrecht aus gutem Grund keine militärische Strafaktion

In der Nacht vom 6. auf den 7. April hat die US-Navy 59 Tomahawk Marschflugkörper  auf den Stützpunkt der syrischen Luftwaffe Shayrat in der Nähe von Homs abgefeuert. Neun syrische Soldaten sind dabei vermutlich getötet worden. Der Angriff soll eine Reaktion auf den vermutlichen Einsatz des Giftgases Sarin durch syrische Streitkräfte in dem Dorf Khan Sheikhun sein. Syrien bestreitet allerdings den Einsatz von chemischen Waffen. Die Grenze zwischen den geteilten …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: The Author’s Response

Markus Gunneflo: Writing the History of Columbus Arriving in Haiti

I could not be happier that this book symposium turned out to be a forum for such wide-ranging and critical commentary about targeted killing. All contributors offer nuanced readings of my book while extending the analysis in several significant directions. In appreciation of both these aspects I want to use this opportunity for a brief response to describe the scope of the book – drawing on the contributors reading of …

READ MORE →

Current DevelopmentsDiscussionKick-off

Am Ende des Rechts angelangt – schon wieder

Der mutmaßliche Giftgas-Angriff des Assad-Regimes in Syrien lässt die Vereinigten Staaten zu militärischen Mitteln im nach wie vor andauernden Syrienkonflikt greifen. Der russische Staatspräsident Wladimir Putin hält auch prompt das Vorgehen der Trump-Administration für völkerrechtswidrig. Das Völkerrecht stößt bei der geeigneten Antwort auf diese barbarischen Taten an seine Grenzen. Wo das (Völker-)Recht keine befriedigenden Antworten mehr geben kann, darf jedoch nicht weggeschaut werden. Im Gegensatz zu seinem amerikanischen Amtskollegen gilt …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: Part 5

Jothie Rajah: Targeted Killing and Spectacular War

1. In October 2015, some four and a half years after the Osama bin Laden killing, the New York Times disclosed that weeks before the Abbottabad raid, federal lawyers had engaged in “[s]tretching sparse precedents” to produce “rationales intended to overcome any legal obstacles”. With these disclosures, the apparently extra-legal killing of bin Laden took on a second life as a hyper-legal killing; a killing authorised by precedent and legal …

READ MORE →

DiscussionResponse

Does transnational environmental crime and transnational fisheries crime exist in international law?

Yes, and it is thriving.

In her post, Professor Elliott argues for a ‘levels-of-analysis’ approach to understanding transnational environmental crime. I made a similar argument in a Chapter entitled ‘Fisheries Crime’ in Elliott and Schaedla’s recent book, where I propose three different dimensions to the analysis of ‘fisheries crime’: As a concept in law or the ‘legal procedural perspective’, where ‘fisheries crime’ is an umbrella term for a number of criminal offences, As a criminological phenomenon …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The use of depleted uranium munition by the US military in Syria – a legally gray area? Not necessarily…

When the US Pentagon confirmed the use and deployment of depleted uranium munition in Syria, an armed conflict having by far exceeded the level of a civil war, on the 16th of February 2017, it did not take long for public outcry to follow. Before dipping into the relevant legal repercussions on the Pentagon’s statement, it is of pivotal importance to answer a fundamental question first: What actually is depleted …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: Part 4

Karin Loevy: Law’s Compulsion or Coming out of the Shadows

On a clear November morning in 2000, Hussein Abayat, a senior official in the Fatah faction Tanzim, was killed by a hellfire anti-tank missile fired from an Israeli helicopter. When the incident was announced later that day, instead of the regular official denial of any direct involvement by Israel in the attack, the Israeli defense minister went on live radio, openly boasting that the IDF did it. I was a …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

CJEU Cases C-157/15 Achbita and C-188/15 Bougnaoui

Does ‘neutrality’ trump religious freedom?

1. Introduction On 14 March 2017 the CJEU upheld the banning of the visible display of any political, philosophical or religious sign in the workplace. As a future consequence, European companies may introduce certain rules to prohibit other religious, political and philosophical symbols. The cases involved two female employees in France and in Belgium, who were dismissed for refusing to remove their headscarves which covered their hair and neck, but …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: Part 3

Nahed Samour: Targeted Killing, Revisiting Hobbes: No Protection, No Obedience

Markus Gunneflo’s book shows how the normalization of targeted killing emerged through extensive legal work. Offering a meticulous account of history and practice, the book highlights the law and politics of protection in the dispute on killing to protect. Hobbes crafted his state sovereignty in Leviathan “with no other design than to set before men’s eyes the mutual relation between protection and obedience”.[1] Targeted killing is a response to the …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: Part 2

Ioannis Kalpouzos: On the Constitution of Global Asymmetric Warfare

It is worth repeating that the suggestion that drone technology constitutes a ‘paradigm change’ and a ‘break with the past’ in the international law of force is of limited heuristic value. Both the descriptive accuracy and normative implications of this position have been challenged. Notably, such stark peridiocization may have pernicious effects, especially in naturalizing the promise of a ‘new way of war’ associated with the distanced precision of drone …

READ MORE →

Nuremberg TrialsSymposium

If you are looking for perfect justice look somewhere else.

Lawyers, historians, and the Nuremberg Trials’ precedential qualities.

It is not very often that a historian’s book, even one about a pivotal moment in the annals of international criminal law, meets with such interest among his legal and jurisprudential colleagues, and I am very grateful for the willingness of the three reviewers (Prior/Papa and Mégret) to devote precious time to The Betrayal and to the Voelkerrechtsblog team for hosting the symposium. One of the difficulties of trespassing disciplinary …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Gunneflo Book Symposium: Part 1

Itamar Mann: Israel and the Forever War

1. On 4 January 2017, a military court in Jaffa convicted Israeli soldier Elor Azaria of manslaughter. The case has set Israeli public debate ablaze for almost a year now, and was widely reported abroad. As a video released by the human rights group Betselem revealed, Abd Al Fatah A-Sharif was wounded and lying, face down, when Azaria approached and shot a bullet through his head. A-Sharif had stabbed an …

READ MORE →

Gunneflo Book SymposiumSymposium

Targeted Killing: A Legal and Political History

A Book Symposium

Over the coming weeks, the Völkerrechtsblog will host an online symposium on the recently published book Targeted Killing: A Legal and Political History (CUP 2016) by Markus Gunneflo. Markus Gunneflo is a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer in public international law at Lund University in Sweden. The book will be discussed by Itamar Mann (Haifa), Ioannis Kalpouzos (London), Nahed Samour (Helsinki), Karin Loevy (NYU) and Jothie Rajah (American Bar Foundation, Chicago). …

READ MORE →

DiscussionResponse

The battle against transnational fisheries crime

Jurisdictional challenges

The raison d’être of the concept of transnational ‘fisheries crime’ (TFC) (INTERPOL 2013) or ‘marine resource crime’ (UNODC 2011) can be traced to endemic illicit activities in the fisheries sector which, due to their devastating impacts, are increasingly considered as a serious problem worthy of attention as ‘criminal’ rather than merely ‘illegal’ behaviour. In terms of scope and approach, TFC is a broader and perhaps more ambitious successor of the …

READ MORE →

Nuremberg TrialsSymposium

Nuremberg and the Contemporary Commitment to International Criminal Justice

The Nuremberg trial often stands as a nostalgic memory in the minds of international criminal lawyers. Perhaps it is the particular black and white simplicity of the trial, the mostly abject “bad guys” in the dock, the compound character of their evil deeds, and the justness of the Allied cause, tainted in sepia tones with the passage of time. Lawyers’ historicization of that episode tends to be saturated with commitments …

READ MORE →

Nuremberg TrialsSymposium

Nuremberg Trials a Betrayal to History?

Book Review: “The Betrayal” by Kim Priemel

Kim Priemel’s “The Betrayal” is a very thoroughly researched historical but also philosophical and critical narrative of the Nuremberg Trials. Two principal questions guide the reader through the book: Can history be judged, and if so, by what means? And can accountability mechanisms and the applicable law ever be neutral given their historically influenced evolution? Priemel questions the success of Nuremberg, given its selective focus on only certain parts of …